The Drama Police Blog

The first law of the Drama Police is - there are no Drama Police

Art cannot and should not be policed. It could be argued that here is no “good or bad” art-only art that works for you on some level or does not. And that has as much to do with the patron as the artist.

In our cyber age which gives new meaning to the phrase “everyone’s a critic,” let the Drama Police serve and protect you from the random drama that comes with being an artist by not only enforcing a smile, but summoning support in the form of tips, to-do lists, affirmations, and other resource tools.

So go ahead: Draw outside the line, act the fool, dance in-between the beat, sing a grace note, and follow your muse.

You Have the Right to Remain Creative; Anything you make can and should be used against all odds to make the world a finer place.

  • Surprise Witness!

    DP (drama police): PLEASE STATE YOUR NAME AND OCCUPATION FOR THE RECORD:

    Witness: DeQuina Moore ...Actress/Singer-Songwriter/Dancer/Author

    DP: CURRENT PROJECT(S)?:

    Witness: Flashdance the Musical ...Also working toward releasing my first self-titled, r&b/hip-hop
    soul, solo album

    DP: WHAT IS ONE OF THE FUNNIEST THINGS YOU HAVE WITNESSED WHILE ON STAGE OR IN THE AUDIENCE?

    Witness: In Flashdance there's a fabulous number called "Put It On" where we the flashdancers make the true distinction between flashdancing and stripping; and during this number we have to put clothes on so quickly while we are singing and dancing, so if anything gets off by even a little bit you might have to finish the number in your underwear!  LOL!  It's happened once or twice and it is HYSTERICAL!  What's most funny is that if this happens, not only is it embarrassing, but it completely goes against what we are singing about: PUTTING IT ON is the song title!  NOT taking it off!  LOL!

    DP: WHAT IS YOUR DREAM ROLE (no matter how against "type") AND WHAT GIVES YOU ARTISTIC LICENSE  TO PLAY IT?

    Witness: I have always wanted to play Dorothy in The Wiz !!!  It's the reason I ever jumped into musical theatre!!!  I just adore that musiccal!!!  ...Liscense!?!?  Well, I consider myself an accomplished actress/singer/dancer!  I know I could effectively and emotionally tell that story, for my personal life has strongly paralleled Dorothy's.  AND "Be A Lion" has been one of my main auditon songs to date; I've booked a lot of gigs with that masterpiece!

    DP: WHAT 'SAFETY TIP' CAN YOU OFFER YOUNG ACTORS TO PROTECT THEIR SELF ESTEEM IN SUCH A TOUGH BUSINESS?

    Witness: I always say KNOW YOUR CRAFT!!!  Really educate yourself so that you are always growing as an artist, thereby slimming the competition!  Also, DON'T GET THE "BIG HEAD"!  Always remain "humble, grateful, and teachable"- the huge life lesson that my high school acting coach, Ms. Susan Phillips, taught me. Additionally, one last thing I live by: NEVER EVER COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS!  ALWAYS COMPETE WITH YOURSELF & TRY TO ONE-UP YOUR OWN LAST PERFORMANCE!  This way you are not distracted by others!  Instead, you are always becoming a better artist, therefore solidifying your place in this industry!

    DP: ANYTHING YOU WANT TO CONFESS, I MEAN "SHARE?"

    Witness: LOL!  I can confess... I mean share... that I am filled with lots of insecurities and I question myself all the time.  But with practice and experience and my will to learn/need to grow, I have mastered how to use my fear and adrenaline to enhance my performance versus allowing those things to hold me back!  In other words, we won't always have the perfect performance-sometimes we might even fall flat on our faces-but it's about learning from that experience, jumping back on the bandwagon and continuing on an on and on!  Each moment, even the bad and/or embarrassing ones will shape your artistry and will only make you stronger!  It's just a matter of perpective!

    DP: IF YOU COULD CREATE ANY SHOWBUISNESS LAW, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

    Witness:  Hmmmm, I know!  Every theatre and/or company would have to have the most amazing sound system for the singers!!  There's nothing scarier than trying to pull off a great performance when it's hard to hear yourself in the monitors and/or hear the music!!  Ugh!!  It would be a HARDCORE law if I could decide!! LOL!!

    DeQuina MooreAccomplished actress, singer-songwriter, performer, producer, entrepreneur and now author, DeQuina Moore is certainly a force to be reckoned with.  Forget triple-threat!  This captivating artist is a natural born SEPTUPLE-threat with the looks, passion, drive, and personality that walk-the-walk and talk-the-talk of a true superstar.  Truly a southern belle-born and raised in Houston, TX-DeQuina had to master many voice-and-diction classes in order to lose her accent when needed, further upgrading her acting chops.  This scholarly Thespian trained at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts(HSPVA) and furthered her rewarding education at the prestigious New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she was readily discovered by agencies/management and began working immediately!

    DeQuina Moore’s elephantine passion for theatre, film, and television was inspired by an array of moments.  For one, from the first to the eighth grade she used to sneak out of class, tip-toe to the bathroom and put on a little scene, song and dance!  Her favorite teacher from the second grade, Mrs. Wilson, still tells this story to date.  Later, in the eighth grade she began interning at the local radio stations, 97.9 The Box and Majic 102 Jams, where her musical flame was further sparked.  And then, while training in the Young Performers Program at The Ensemble Theatre, she identified her multi-talented abilities, how they could all work together for a stronger career; and from there, focused on ways to showcase her many gifts.

    DeQuina’s fearless, alluring, and purpose-driven makeup is evident in her success.  She has landed numerous national/international commercials, voice-overs, and print ads with such companies as Coca-Cola, Payless, Bank of America and many more.  On the small screen, she has secured starring roles on majors like Law & Order:SVU, Lifetime’s Racing For Time, NBC’s Third Watch, and more.  On the big screen, she most recently enjoyed her leading role as Devonne in Joyful Noise, sharing the screen with superstars such as Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton; and, her film career goes on to include such movies as Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family, The Last New Yorker, Ghost Town, Rachel Getting Married, Camp, and more.  Additionally, DeQuina’s stage life has soared with starring roles like originating Little Shop of Horrors’ Chiffon on Broadway, and also originating in Broadway’s Legally Blonde the Musical as Pilar!  She’s played in several other shows such as Shakespeare in the Park’s Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hair(AFC), Happy Days the Musical, Beehive, The Wiz, and is currently starring in the Broadway bound national tour of Flashdance the Musical, as Kiki: the sassy, sexy, savvy waitress by day/”flashdancer” by night!

    Further, DeQuina Moore is heavily featured on major Broadway cast recordings and was blessed to have the opportunity to open concerts for various artists like Eric Benet and Destiny’s Child.   She has also graced the stage and/or screen with such notables as N’sync’s Joey Fatone, Bill Cosby, Keke Palmer, Charles S. Dutton, Nia Long, Courtney B. Vance, Tyler Perry, Chris Christopherson, and more.  DeQuina has performed as a background singer for a few artists-some of which were overseas recordings-having to take on the challenge of singing in various Asian languages which was hilarious and loads of fun.  Other special guest spots include opening The Tony Awards with the awesome Hugh Jackman performing the top number: “One Night Only”.  Plus, DeQuina has performed on popular television spots, as well, namely The View, The David Letterman Show, and The Today Show.  Despite one theatre’s requests for the audience to hold their applause during her performance of Tina Turner and Diana Ross in “Beehive” the musical, DeQuina received multiple standing ovations and applause which further proved what a thunderous, well-rounded entertainer she is.

    In addition to currently lighting up the stage as Kiki in Flashdance the Musical, DeQuina is now working toward the release of her debut r&b/hip-hop-soul album under her own label: D-Lux Records!

    This proud AEA/AFTRA/SAG member is on fire!  She has the dreams of a mastermind and will to continue to reach even higher, for her ultimate life mission is to eventually help others effectively attain their goals-whatever those aspirations may be.  In fact, DeQuina has already begun this feat.  She currently sits on the board of Bridge Da Gap, an organization centered around utilizing a new, creative curriculum and music to rebuild the interconnected social foundation of our youth, in turn uplifting their chances of grasping a better education.  Due to her mantra that she lives by (remain humble, grateful, and teachable), this septuple-threat has been able to accomplish more than she ever imagined, and is nowhere near finished;  therefore, she wishes to instill this work ethic and train of thought in many artists/citizens to come.

    Watch out for this rising star! DeQuina Moore’s talent is magnificently incomparable and unstoppable!

    www.dequinamoore.com

    www.facebook.com/DeQuinaMooreMusic

    www.flashdancethemusical.com

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester


  • Surprise Witness!

    DP (drama police): PLEASE STATE YOUR NAME AND OCCUPATION FOR THE RECORD:

    Witness: Blair Goldberg

    DP: CURRENT PROJECT(S)?:

    Witness: I just finished the 1st National Tour of Sister Act, where I played a nun. It was pretty awesome!

    DP: WHAT IS ONE OF THE FUNNIEST THINGS YOU HAVE WITNESSED WHILE ON STAGE OR IN THE AUDIENCE?

    Witness: Just a few weeks ago, during my last show of Sister Act during a musical number called "Bless Our show," the woman playing Mary Lazarus completely forgot her line in the song and made up jibber jabber. Literal jibber jabber. Not even close to English. The rest of us all broke out into hysterics and did not sing for the next 20 seconds because we were laughing so hard. It was more than just a quick slip up. There was no sound coming out of our mouths except giggling. The best part about it was that a lot of us were already pretty emotional because it was my last show, so the laughter turned into tears and by the end we were all just cry-laughing. It was something that I'm sure the audience noticed and unfortunately, we just couldn't help it. It was one of my personal favorite funny moments on stage to date.

    DP: WHAT IS YOUR DREAM ROLE (no matter how against "type") AND WHAT GIVES YOU ARTISTIC LICENSE TO PLAY IT?

    Witness: Fanny Brice in Funny Girl. I have artistic license for that one because I'm Jewish. Does that count? Or Dot in Sunday in the Park with George. I have license to play that one because as a little girl, I was lucky enough to appear on Broadway as Bernadette Peter's little sis, so I feel I've learned a lot from her and am continuously inspired by her. Or Eva in Evita. I have no artistic license to play that whatsoever, but let's make it happen!

    DP: WHAT 'SAFETY TIP' CAN YOU OFFER YOUNG ACTORS TO PROTECT THEIR SELF ESTEEM IN SUCH A TOUGH BUSINESS?

    Witness: That's a tough question! This business is really difficult for actors both young and old because your self-esteem is constantly on a roller coaster ride. You have good days and bad days, positive feedback, negative feedback, and then no feedback at all. The one piece of advice I can offer is to remember that other people's successes are not your failures. Stay in your lane and work toward achieving the goals you set for yourself. If a friend books a Broadway show that you weren't even up for, is that your failure, just because you didn't book anything today? No! Be happy for that person, because I promise you, what goes around comes around. You are responsible for you and only you, so work the hardest you can each day to make your dreams come true. If you stick to it as well as continue to learn and grow as an artist, I promise you, something will stick.

    DP: IF YOU COULD CREATE ANY SHOW BUISINESS LAW, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

    Witness: USE YOUR RESOURCES! Nowadays, social media and the internet in general make it so very easy to find out information. Knowledge is power! Find out information about previous projects the director has done to get a feel for their style. Watch YouTube clips of the choreographer's other work. Ask questions to friends who might have more information that you. Don't do it to the point of being obnoxious, but take advantage of whatever connections and knowledge you have access to. It's a small business, so take note!

    Blair GoldbergBlair Goldberg got her start in the theater at the young age of 9, appearing in the Original Broadway Cast of ANNIE GET YOUR GUN starring Bernadette Peters and Tom Wopat. Ever since that first moment she stepped foot on a Broadway stage, she knew that performing would be a part of her life forever. She went on to study theater in both high school and college, earning a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance at NYU. On the very day of graduation from undergrad, she found out she had been cast in a developmental lab of the musical CARRIE. After taking part in the workshop, she was offered a spot in the Off-Broadway production, produced by MCC Theater, where she played the role of Norma, as well as understudying and performing the role of Chris.  She can be heard on the Original Cast Album, produced by Sh-K-Boom records. Blair then went onto perform in the Broadway bound musical, THE NUTTY PROFESSOR, directed by Jerry Lewis, music by Marvin Hamlisch, and book/lyrics by Rupert Holmes, where she played the role of Peg and understudied the principle role of Stella. She most recently appeared in the 1st National Tour of SISTER ACT. Some of her other favorite credits include: IF IT ONLY RUNS A MINUTE 5 (NYMF), IN THAT VALLEY (NAMT), a reading of TIME TO KILL at the York Theater (Beth), THE FIX(Violet), AIDA(Amneris), and GREASE (Marty).  She is the proud recipient of the Young Talent Award in the 2010 Lotte Lenya Competition and winner of the 2007 Shining Star Competition for WOR Radio (Northeast Region). She also performed in the 2011 Broadway's Rising Stars Concert at Town Hall. When not on stage, she enjoys watching lots of television, working out, doing jigsaw puzzles, and fine dining. She resides in New York City.

    www.Blair-Goldberg.com
    Twitter - @blairdgoldberg

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • Special Bulletin: Mini Minneli On the Loose!

    The Drama Police have issued an A.D.B. (All Divas Bulletin) in search of fictional American muse/fashion icon/acting mentor and recovering bedazzler-addict Mini Minneli, (aka MM, or M2)

       

    According to an anonymous source, M2 was last seen fleeing L.A. by Big Wheel, a fugitive from theatrical justice. (See Mini's Facebook Fan page for details)

    The authorities are pounding the Broadway and Hollywood beat- calling upon all you junior detectives out there to post any Mini Minneli sightings, here at Drama Police Central.

    There will be a reward for the most compelling eyewitness report that may lead to her whereabouts!

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester


  • The Line-Up: OSCAR EDITION!

     

    Les Quiz

    1. Six Degrees of Separation from the Barricade: name an actor and try to connect him or her to Les Miz in six steps or less

    (For example: The Olsen Twins: Were friends with Heath Ledger, who starred opposite Jake Gyllenhaal who dated Taylor Swift who dated Joe Jonas-brother of Nick who played Gavroche on Broadway in: Les Miz)

    2. Is it possible that Fantine died from attempting to belt a high E while dying of consumption? I’m just saying.

    3. At the End of the Film You’re Another Year Older

    4. Ann Hathaway's mother has also played Fantine.

    5. A post on the Les Miz imdb site points out the film’s following anachronism: “The calf seen wandering in the barricades scene is a white-faced Hereford poll. That breed did not exist before 1880, and did not reach France until the 20th Century.”

    Thus missing the larger goof: people do not sing while dying in France.

    (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1707386/trivia?tab=gf)

    6. What original Broadway cast member of Les Miz appeared in the film adaptation of Rent?

    (Answer: Broadway’s original Fantine, Randy Graff, played Mark’s mother in the film Rent)

    7. What is the name of the sequel to Les Miz?

    (Answer: Cosette by Laura Kalpakian, HarperCollins; July 1995)

     

     

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • NEWS FLASH: Mini Minneli speaks!

    (Albeit thru an interpreter since she is on vocal rest)

    "Darlings: On this day of national mourning for My People (i.e. Super Bowl Sunday), I offer some comfort:  Garry the Groundhog saw Me and My Shadow yesterday , confirming there will be either six more weeks of kick-ball-changes, or I will be six weeks early for rehearsal. Either way, it's a win/win .. as the kids say. Go Team!"

    For more info on Mini Minneli, visit her Facebook Fan Page.

      Coming soon: Mini Minneli goes to the Oscars!
    Coming soon: Mini Minneli goes to the Oscars!

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • Random Acts of Flying

    Confess!: at one time or another you have found yourself watching a live performance, when suddenly and without warning, you are struck by a fleeting case of T.D.D. (Theatrical Distraction Disorder). What is a theatre patron to do?  One wouldn’t dare reach for a Device; Everything is off, swallowed or on mute. Everything that is, except for that imaginary diva in your head who whispers: “what if that that character on stage suddenly flew?  Not metaphorically. But like, you know: up and winged across the stage? Maybe even over the audience. And for no discernible reason other than the magic of theatre and/or lyrics compelled them to do so."

    Welcome to Random Acts of Flying (AKA: RAF). Here are two such moments of RAF I want to see in the postmodern, Taymor meets Dali theatre of my dreams:

    1) Company: when Joanne commands everyone to toast on the final “Rise!” of “Ladies Who Lunch,” Elaine Stritch levitates from her bar stool, and rises over the audience sprinkling olives like pixie dust.

    2) Doubt: at the end of the play Sister Aloysius takes off like the Flying Nun and … scene. 

    What character would you like to see RAF, and at what point in their show? 


    The author backstage in the national tour of Peter Pan, A place where dreams are born, and flying is in the contract.

    RANDOM LINK: One of the most charmingly disturbing websites I have accidentally come across while searching for Peter Pan costumes: be warned! http://pixyland.org/peterpan/

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • Surprise Witness!



    DP: You’ve been sworn-in; please state your name:

    WITNESS: “Mini Minnelli” (Editor’s note: on perpetual vocal rest, Mini Minnelli  is  responding in

    impressive longhand)

    DP: Occupation?

    WITNESS: “Fictional American Diva”

    DP:  Please share with us something amazing you witnessed on, off, or backstage.

    WITNESS: “You mean other than myself?

    DP: Understood. Let’s move on:  If you could create any law, what would it be?

    WITNESS: “Stupid Bowl Sunday, (aka a day of national mourning for my people), would hence forth be known as Mini Minnelli Day; A national holiday commemorated with a parade of fabulous floats. And fireworks. And Johnny Weir.”

    DP: Thank you for your cooperation; is there anything else you would like to confess?

    WITNESS: “Yes. I may be made of plastic, but I have had no work done.”



    BIO: for more information check out Mini Minnelli’s Facebook fan page.

        

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • Random Mugshots

    The Drama Police will return to duty in January, 2013!


  • Surprise Witness!


    Our brief Interrogation, I mean Interview, with an unusual suspect!

    DP: Please state your name for the record.

    WITNESS: “Amy Russ”

    DP: Current occupation?

    WITNESS:  “Owner of ActorWebs.com and Actress”

    DP: Share with us something memorable you witnessed on, off, or backstage.

    WITNESS: “One of my very first professional theatre jobs was as the Milkmaid in a production of Oliver! at the Hirschfeld Theatre on Miami Beach. Davy Jones (of The Monkees fame) was our Fagin, and he was a delight. And also a bit of a prankster! One day right before half hour, the girls' dressing room door burst open, and in came Davy, shirtless, with a woman's stocking over his head! He proceeded to moon the entire room! I couldn't quite believe I was looking at a Monkees' hiney! His birthday came around during our run, so the cast got him a "butt" cake from the naughty bakery in town. I was very sad to hear of his death this past year. He was a nice man.”

    DP: If you could create any law, what would it be?

    WITNESS: “Liza would be in at least one show per season. The world needs more Liza.”

    DP: What's next?

    WITNESS: “Look for me in commercials for VW and John Hancock!”

    Amy RussAmy's credits include Bill: A Rake’s Tale at the Soho Playhouse. Off-Bway: Kerouac. Regional: It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play (MTC, Moss Hart Award), The Ice Breaker & The Misanthrope (both at Boston’s New Rep), Bus Stop, Nine, Nunsense, Where’s Charley. Other NYC: The Seagull, Baby with the Bathwater, Parallel Lives, Frankenstein…do you dream (NYMF), By Proxy & Glimpses (both at Arclight), Angry Girl Gang (NYMF), Charles & Diana: The Musical (MITF). Tour: USO World Troupe. Film: The Guru, The Yards, Where Her Dreams End, William’s Christening (Woods Hole Film Festival - Best Short Narrative) , Till Proven Innocent. TV: The Sopranos (the very last episode!) Another World, Guiding Light, One Life to Live. Commercials: VW, Capital One, VISA, Great Wolf Lodge, among others.

    Amy is also the founder and owner of ActorWebs.com, which provides actors creative and cost-effective website design, do-it-yourself website builders and other web-based products.

    Official website: www.amyruss.com
    Website Company: www.actorwebs.com

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester


  • Random Mugshot

    BIO: for more information check out Mini Minnelli’s Facebook fan page.

    Share your thoughts on Mini Minnelli below!

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

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